Trump Administration Announces $64M In New Coal Industry Investment

Screengrab/CNN Business/YouTube

JakeThomas

Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette said the goal is to make coal plants smaller, more efficient, and cleaner.

The Trump administration is once again looking to help bail out the dying coal industry, this time announcing a $64 million initiative to fund research and development for coal, according to The Hill.

Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette unveiled the move, called the Coal FIRST initiative, during an Atlantic Council event on Friday. Brouillette said it will “help us produce more coal-based power more efficiently and transform it into a near-zero emissions energy source.”

"Coal as a percentage of U.S. electricity generation is declining," the secretary said. "The efforts that we're undertaking is not to subsidize the industry and preserve their status ... as a larger electricity generator. It is simply to make the product cleaner and to look for alternative uses for this product."

Brouillette said the focus will be on “making coal plants smaller and more efficient,” which he claims will facilitate making the plants cleaner.

The Hill noted that coal burning power plants are becoming an increasingly small part of the U.S. energy sector, particularly as natural gas and renewable energy have become less expensive.

Mary Anne Hitt, the senior director of Sierra Club's Beyond Coal campaign, said in a statement that the administration’s latest move is “ridiculous and wasteful.”

"The DOE putting $64 million to research new ways to burn coal is like the Pentagon spending $1 billion for new ways to fire a musket ball," she said.

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Comments (3)
No. 1-3
VeteranMilitaryOfcr
VeteranMilitaryOfcr

All attempts by Trump to halt plants for power plants to convert from coal are pointless, as nothing he can do can alter long term plans that have been in place for a decade or more. Both clean air regulations and cheaper forms of energy production have moved energy production plans away from coal for the past ten years or longer. A coal fired plant was replaced by natural gas in south Florida, a $1.2B project, in 2013. That had been in the works for ten years, a typical period of time for such upgrades. Trump's $64M project is relatively worthless, given that current plans around the nation are on the order of tens of billions of dollars.
There is no incentive to stockholders to halt plans to improve power plants.
As usual, his bluster is completely empty, a very small piece.

Dadzilla
Dadzilla

Why not just burn the money, coal is a dead end, the only way to bring it back is to give it away.

SylviaS
SylviaS

Were has he been? Coal is going out if not already dead. The big users of coal are shutting down. We have or had steel mills in Michigan that are in the process or already gone. Coal is out talk to the people that work or worked the mines they will tell you.


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